Srinagar, Mar 15: In wake of coronavirus pandemic, the J&K tourism department has put all the promotional activities on halt in Kashmir.
Tourist inflow was already on a significant decline due to long haul of shutdowns last year.
So far 2020, however, the onslaught of coronavirus has further impacted the chances of peak tourist season in the valley.
A senior official of Tourism Department, Kashmir said the five roadshows scheduled in March and April have been postponed due to coronavirus.
“These shows were aimed to improve the tourist inflow by making the travel trade fraternity of the neighboring states aware about the scope of tourism in Kashmir. The tourist operators from the valley were supposed to meet the operators across the country and sign a memorandum of understanding with them,” he said.
However, he said, the coronavirus scare has hit the possibility of any such promotional activity.
“The tourism industry will take long to recover from this as it already incurred huge losses last year. And now the threat of coronavirus comes as the last straw,” the official said.
Director Tourism Kashmir Nisar Ahmad Wani said the postponement of events has taken place in accordance with the government orders.
“As a precautionary measure against the spread of virus, the administration has recommended that large gathering be postponed. This includes all forms of events, conferences and conventions,” Wani said.
Although no positive cases of coronavirus have been reported in Kashmir, health officials said all hospitals should ensure their staff is trained and well-prepared to deal with the virus.
The government has been issuing advisories to inform people of the precautionary measures and symptoms associated with coronavirus.
Also, additional trained staff has been placed for screenings at the Srinagar Airport and National Highway Jammu and Kashmir, an isolation center was created at Sanat Nagar, so that the suspected cases are directly taken there instead of tertiary care center.